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Viennese Blood

Vienna as seen from Schnbrunn Palace Gardens

It was in Vienna inspirer of the famous "Viennese waltzes" that in August 1889, Johann Strauss II wrote the one that the Austrian Emperor Franz Josef, on the occasion of his visit to Germany, gave to the German Kaiser Wilhelm II as a "toast of friendship from Austria to Germany. Originally called "Mano a mano" (Hand in Hand), later the composition was named

Emperor Waltz.

Its also in the Schnbrunn Palace Gardens that are offered grandiose spectacles with the music of Johann Strauss II played by worldwide famous orchestras.

Johann Strauss II, one of the illustrious sons of Austria and great composer of the Romantic
Age, was responsible for the popularity of the waltz in Vienna during the nineteenth century. This monument in his honor is located at the entrance of City Park - Stadtpark.

Vienna - the rosy capital, homeland not only of Strauss and Mozart, Haydn, Schubert, Mahler, etc.. - is all music and romanticism, seeming to extend the sides of Burgtheater to welcome its visitors with open arms.

But the beauty of the city is not solely made of its music - the building where the City Hall of Vienna is installed - Rathaus - is an example of one of the most beautiful architecture in the city.

And it is hard to say when the building is more admirable - if under sunlight or when night falls and artificial lighting highlights each of its marvelous architectural details.

Since Vienna has been the birth place of the Great Music since the great names that sparkled across Europe and then the rest of civilization, the stage of its Opera House remains one of the most coveted in the world of musical art.

An original room inside Vienna State Opera.

Playing on the stage of the Vienna State Opera is always a coronation for the career of any artist, company or orchestra.

A Night at the Vienna State Opera is not only a feast for music lovers as well as an opportunity for foreigners to appreciate how elegant are the Viennese.

The Operas events rooms are other of the refined ambiences of Vienna where the society displays its entire splendor.

Vienna yearly promotes hundreds of balls but the most famous is the Opera Ball which, as might be expected, takes place in the magnificent hall of the State Opera, and is considered a social event of the highest level, attracting celebrities from all over the world.

The Wiener Musikverein, commonly abbreviated to Musikverein, is a concert hall and home of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.

Another important annual event takes place at the hall of the Wiener Musikverein: the

Vienna Philharmonic Ball.

Since 1981, every year from the end of June to mid-July takes place the Jazz in Vienna festival, in its Ancient Roman Theatre, a historic monument built in the first century of Christian era where is now Vienna.

Schnbrunn Palace, one of the major historical and cultural monuments in Austria, was built
between 1638 and 1643, and severely damaged during the second Turkish siege of Vienna. The reconstruction and expansion to its current form was in made in 1743, under Empress Maria Theresa.

Visiting the interior of Schnbrunn is like walking into a fairy tale...

Gloriette of the Baroque palace (Schnbrunn) that was the summer residence of the Austrian Imperial
family since the mid-eighteenth century until the end of World War II, also being a cultural and political center of the Habsburg empire. Here lived until her marriage to the future Emperor of Brazil D. Pedro I, the Archduchess Leopoldina of Habsburg, who had such a great role in the independence of Brazil.

The complex Belvedere composed by two palaces upper and lower and gardens, built for Prince Eugene of Savoy general, philosopher and art lover.

It's so much beauty in artistic painting as well as in architectural decoration that we cannot highlight one among all. I opted for the one which is called Earthly Hall, where the sculptures are the main feature - beautiful, like all the others of the Palace.

Gardens link the upper palace to the lower with motifs defined in a gentle gradient and they include decorative fountains and cascades, Baroque sculptures and majestic wrought iron gates.

The main gate to the Upper Belvedere, with coats of arms of the Princes of Savoy supported by lions.

The Upper Palace, Baroque, houses the world's largest collection of the Austrian Gustav Klimt including the legendary painting The Kiss - and also other works by Schiele and Kokoschka, both also Austrian.

Sumptuous as a palace is the Parliament building of Vienna.

With the end of the Empires of which Austria was a part, the political regime of the country changed to Parliamentary Republic. This building of neoclassical facade, from the early twentieth century, today houses four ministries.

Minoritenkirche - founded in 1275, it is one of the first Gothic churches of Austria, where
there is a copy of the famous Milanese mosaic mural by Leonardo da Vinci - "The Last Supper".

Saint Stephens Cathedral, an example of architecture of the twelfth century, was renovated in
Gothic style between 1304 and 1433, while its interior has acquired a baroque tendency. Its famous bell, "Pummerin", weighing not less than 21 tons, suffered considerable damage in World War II.

The Votive Church, neo-Gothic, inspired on the Gothic of the Cathedral of Cologne, was built in the late nineteenth century in appreciation for the miraculous survival of the Emperor Francis Joseph after an assassination attempt.

Churches, all of them bear artistically rich interiors, but the one of St. Peter's Church, which is near the central Graben street, is considered even more divine and impressive for those who pay a visit.

Another of the important churches of the city - St. Francis of Assisis - lies on the banks of the Danube, that becomes really blue at the magic hour of the sunset in Vienna.

In everyday Vienna, Graben is a pulsing shopping street at the heart of city center where is a famous column. The street has Roman origin and is surrounded by typical style places, elegant tradition and gourmet pleasures.

Grabenstrae This, the Graben, is one of the streets showing us that the majestic
beauty of Vienna goes beyond its palaces and castles...

Pestsule Column of the

Plague - it was the payment of a promise by Emperor Leopold, who prayed for the end of the plague epidemic of 1679, which claimed about 100,000 lives. The sculpture is composed of angels, figures representing faith, a praying emperor, and it is crowned by the Holy Trinity sitting on a cloud.

Although Vienna is permeated with flower gardens that would deserve a compilation with only this kind of beauty, one cannot walk by the busy streets of the city without find a well cared flower shop on the sidewalk.

Kohlmarkt street of great luxury in Vienna, begins in St. Michael's Square and
displays a high density of jewelers and international brands stores.

It is on Kohlmarkt Street the most famous pastry shop in Vienna - the Caf Demel, in which the halls are always full of visitors to taste the sweet temptations and the special coffee with cream.

Also in the central part of the city lies the Hotel Sacher, famous due to the luxury, the elegance and the sophistication of its physical structure and high standard of services, while its very famous Sachertorte constitutes one of the greatest gustatory pleasures that one can find in Vienna.

Restaurant Steirereck, in Stadtpark, is on the list of the 5 best restaurants in Vienna

and also on that one that elected the top 50 worldwide.

Vienna still preserves the medieval Grinzing - today a neighborhood far from the city - with its houses called Heurigen (traditional cafes with live music - folk in general - serving wine and grape juice), since long a big attraction for tourists. In the Grinzings village-cemetery are buried Gustav Mahler and his widow, Alma Mahler-Werfel.

"Wheels of pleasure", with chairs suspended from large wooden rings and driven by strong men, may have originated in Bulgaria in the seventeenth century. Wiener Riesenrad in Prater Park, was built in 1897, 65m tall, for the Golden Jubilee of Franz Josef I of Austria. Damaged during the First World War, it was rebuilt with 15 cabins.

Ankeruhr is a large clock and music box that links two buildings in the center of Vienna, and reveals
itself as one of the most outstanding works of Art Nouveau. It's a popular tourist attraction because it shows historical figures at every full hour - Marcus Aurelius, Haydn, Maria Theresa, and others.

But Vienna, cosmopolitan city that it is, besides all its tradition, is also adapted to the technologies of contemporary life, with modern bridges, freeways, wide avenues and buildings of bold architecture.

Not only Vienna but the Danube itself was modernized, now framed by the citys fey lighting, and the walkway of illuminated private and tour boats, and even the refinement of the new glazed restaurant from where much of the beauty of the river and the city is unveiled.

Today, the youth brings to the banks of Danube a relaxed coexistence that is slowly replacing the excessive formalism so characteristic in the European continent. The change is for better or worse? I bet on a tie.

Contrast seems to be a feature of modern life: the very traditional Vienna Opera, continent of the purest nutriment for the soul - the music, here as background for an activity related to physical culture.

Indeed young people have discovered how to enjoy the city in innovative ways and even have brought to the Danube their sailing colors. However, as with most of European youth, they enjoy also - and a lot - all of the cultural improvement which is provided by museums.

This breathtaking Art Complex, near the Imperial Palace, comprises renowned museums such as Leopold Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art, and also a lively variety of restaurants, cafes and bars that make the neighborhood one of the best meeting places in the city. .. and beyond.

MuseumsQuartier is the eighth largest cultural area in the world. The area has originated
from the stables of the Hofburg Imperial Palace and, besides being home to museums, houses different segments towards Art in general and socio-cultural conviviality.

MUMOK "MUseum MOderner Kunst" is another museum located in the MuseumsQuartier.

The Mumok has a collection of 7,000 works of modern and contemporary art, including major works by Andy Warhol, Pablo Picasso, Joseph Beuys, Nam June Paik, and many others.

The Leopold Museum, located at the MuseumsQuartier in Vienna, is houses one of the largest collections of modern Austrian art, featuring artists such as Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt, Oskar Kokoschka and Richard Gerstl. It contains the largest collection of Egon Schiele in the world.

Caf Central,
that since the late nineteenth century is one of the main meeting places for the Viennese intellectuals. It's housed in the Palais Ferstel, one of the most beautiful buildings in the city. Besides Austrian literary personalities of that time, in the early twentieth century were its frequenters: Tito, Sigmund Freud, Adolf Hitler, Vladimir Lenin e Leon Trotsky.

This photo appears also to illustrate the list of the world's 10 best cities to live in, Vienna holding the 2nd place.

Images: all from internet, with credits to authors Songs : The Emperor Waltz by Johann Strauss with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Creation, research, compilation and formatting:

Delza Dias Ferreira

English version: Flavio M. de Freitas Guimares Webmaster and revision Claudia Ricci

So Paulo 2013